Sri Lankan stock rally pauses as consumer shares fall

Jan 29 (Reuters) - Sri Lankan shares slid on Friday after notching a series of all-time highs in recent sessions, hurt by losses in consumer staples and industrial stocks.

* The benchmark stock index ended 1.63% lower at 8,668.07. The index is up 28% so far in 2021, among the strongest equity gains for emerging markets.

* The benchmark had hit a record high on Wednesday . The market was closed on Thursday for a local holiday.

* Meanwhile, Sri Lanka on Friday began its vaccination drive against COVID-19, a day after India sent half a million free vaccine doses to the island nation of 22 million people.

* Trading volume on the CSE All Share Index fell to 336 million from 497.4 million in the previous session.

* Conglomerates Expolanka Holdings and Brown & Co Plc were the top drags on the benchmark, falling more than 8% each.

* Foreign investors were net sellers, offloading 2.59 billion Sri Lankan rupees ($13.6 million) worth of shares, according to exchange data.

* The Sri Lankan rupee was quoted at 190.50 against the dollar as of 1220 GMT, 0.9% stronger for the day compared with the previous close of 192.25, according to Refinitiv data.

* Equity market turnover was 13.42 billion rupees, exchange data showed.

* For a report on global markets, click

* For a report on major currencies, click ($1 = 190.5000 Sri Lankan rupees) (Reporting by Sachin Ravikumar in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber)